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FOX reschedules 'The Simple Life' premiere again, series to now debut over two evenings

By Reality TV World staff, 11/14/2003 

Fox, which is increasingly starting to look like it's playing "spin the bottle" to determine its programming schedule and struggling to plug several underperforming holes in its Fall schedule, has announced yet another scheduling change for the premiere of its highly anticipated Green Acres-style The Simple Life reality series.

The Simple Life, which stars Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton, the "New York socialite" who is currently embroiled in a separate amateur sex tape scandal that the network no doubt secretly hopes will fuel higher broadcast ratings, will now debut over two nights instead of one, with 30-minute 8:30-9:00PM ET/PT broadcasts on both Tuesday, December 2 and Wednesday, December 3. Following the one-time special Wednesday airing, the new reality series that chronicles the adventures of the two "celebutantes" as they "make the transition from filthy rich to just plain filthy," will then continue in its regular time slot on Tuesdays at 8:30 PM ET/PT.

The move is Fox's fourth programming change for the series. The series was originally announced in June as having an August 13 premiere date, however when the pre-show buzz for the series proved to be overwhelmingly positive, FOX decided to delay the series until the Fall season and maximize its potential. Then, after announcing a 30-minute December 2 premiere for the series in mid-September, in late October Fox announced that it was extending the December 2 premiere into a full hour. Now, desperate for a spark for its struggling Fall schedule, the network is fracturing the premiere over two evenings in an apparent attempt to use the series as both a strong lead-out to the network's 8PM programming and a lead-in to its 9PM programming.

In the premiere episode, viewers will follow Paris Hilton and best friend Nicole Richie as they first leave behind the comforts of their lavish lifestyle in Los Angeles to move in with the Leding family in Altus, AR. Upon their arrival at the farm, the girls will go on their first big shopping spree for pigs' feet and learn new things like "What's generic mean?" and "What's a Wal-Mart?"

In the second episode, viewers will watch Paris and Nicole learn what it means to work for a living sort of -- when they get their first job at Danny's Dairy Farm. The girls won't have a clue what they're getting themselves into and try to milk the situation for all they can. Who knew it would be so tough to make some mooo-lah?

Mary-Ellis Bunim and Jonathan Murray (The Real World, Road Rules) are executive producers of The Simple Life, which is a 20th Century Fox Television production in association with Bunim-Murray.

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